Help....what should I say?


My husband and I get together with another couple for dinner and camping a few times a month…(she has been my best friend for 25 years) they are Lutheran and I respect their relegion and have never said anything negative about it.
Her husband is quite a character and is always telling funny jokes, however lately he will sarcasticly say…oh, “ya know thoses catholic priets can’t keep their hands off little boys!”… he has said it so many times it’s getting old!..I enjoy his jokes…but this one comment has gone too far and I’m offened by it.:mad:
This is the thing…he has a good friend thats a retired Cathlic priest and another good friend that’s a decon in the Chruch…he knows I’m a Cathloic and in love with my faith…but he torments me with these comments. I just ignore them b/c i don’t want to hurt anyones feelings espically his wife (my best friend). I have prayed about it and asked Jesus to help me say the right thing, but I’m still not certian what to do.
How should I handle this politely?


I would let it pass.

The abusive-priests scandal is our cross, and we must accept the suffering for it, even if we didn’t personally contribute to it.

Remember, as Catholics, part of our being in Christ is to share in his suffering.

Let the pain of this insult bring you closer to Christ.

But never give in to despair. No matter what others say, not a single promise of Christ will be broken. The gates of hell will not prevail.


I would suggest pulling him aside, so as not to do it in front of others and say something like “I know you probably don’t realize it, but when you say offensive things about Catholic priests or my religion in general it really hurts me. When you talk in this way, you are speaking of one of my family members. Do you you think you could refrain from saying those things around me, or better yet, just refrain from saying them at all because you never know who might be nearby listening. It would mean a lot to our friendship. Thanks!”

If he continues, you might try lowering your head, making the sign of the cross and saying a quick prayer for him each time he does this.


You need to tell him straight off that he’s offending you with that stuff and that if he’d like you to you can produce evidence that shows that the problem is just as bad among non-Catholic clergy, and worse among educators.

Non-Catholic Clergy Sexual Abuse

Scandal in the Church

Current news reports on Non-Catholic clergy

Sexual Abuse in the Social Context

If he thinks that is “cute” and enjoys mocking your faith, he needs to get brought down a peg or two and get a better sense of humor.
Pax tecum,


You should tell him something like: “How would you like it if I made a joke that falsely accused you and your people of a certain atrocity? You can’t judge and label an entire group just because a small handful did something gravely wrong. That’s unfair to the many faithful and good priests that sacrifice themselves for the church everyday. As a devout Catholic, it offends me, and I have to ask that you please refrain from such comments.”

(Say it in a kind and serious tone ofcourse.)

If he persists, then unfortunately the only right thing to do is to stop talking to him. Christ himself said to treat such people as you would a “Gentile or Tax Collector.” In otherwords dissociate with them.


Since you’ve been praying about it I would trust that when the Holy Spirit deems the time is right you will find yourself speaking in defense of the Church and the priests without intending to.

That’s how it’s been for me. At the times I wish I could have said something but just couldn’t find the words or the hedgeway in I’d be frustrated and worried I let the Church down, but at others, I found myself speaking out saying things I had never even thought about before but which were true and necessary to have been said.

The Spirit knows how to use us if we offer ourselve to Him. Just keep praying about how to maintain your friendship with this person and keep offering yourself to the Lord whenever you get together with that couple.


And after you’ve showed him those links that CM posted, you should remind him that “people in glass houses should’nt throw stones.”


I’ve posted this elsewhere:
There is absolutely no evidence that Catholic men (or more specifically, Catholic priests) are more likely to be pedophiles than anyone else.

The only person who I’ve ever heard try to put statistics onto this is the Anglican writer Philip Jenkins (Pedophiles and Priests) who puts the rates at similar to prevailing rates in society. Something like 0.3% for the incidence of pedophilia among priests, I believe. So, when we’re talking about very young children, which pedophilia is, it is extremely uncommon. Ephebophilia is what most of the problems have been, i.e., adults to teenage boys. I believe he finds that the incidence is 2%, which is supposedly comparable to the rate of the same incidents among married men.

The difference is also in the structure of the Catholic Church. It is centralized, things get reported. Protestants are highly uncentralized. Since this information implicates the rate among Protestant clergy, I read this (in a review of the book):

Notwithstanding the difficulties that such data comparisons hold, the available information on clergy sexual misconduct shows that the problem is bigger among Protestant clergy. For example, the most cited survey of sexual problems among the Protestant clergy shows that 10 percent have been involved in sexual misconduct and “about two or three percent” are “pedophiles.” With regard to the “pedophile” problem, the figure for the Catholic clergy, drawn from the most authoritative studies, ranges between .2 percent to 1.7 percent. Yet we hear precious little about these comparative statistics.

It’s not as if people are putting these abuses in context. My point isn’t to rag on Protestants, just to say: this isn’t a Catholic problem. Whenever adults regularly come into contact with children, I can imagine rates of these horrible things are comparable.

The issue is framed around the idea that it is a problem deriving from celibacy. That’s probably why Protestants are ignored. Anyway, the idea of celibacy being the problem is nonsense, celibacy does not drive you to become a pedophile, certainly, nor for a male priest to molest an altar boy. Pedophilia and ephebophilia are disorders, not lapses of self-control.

Others have drawn the strong prevalance of the abuse among male altar servers (I’ve seen 85% quotes) to argue that these cases of epebophilia are a result of problems deriving from homosexual clergy. I can’t say I’m totally convinced, but I have to say, it’s an interesting piece of information to consider.

And in any case, most churches being hit with sexual abuse allegations are Protestant churches, or so a study has found, notes the Christian Science Monitor.

Despite headlines focusing on the priest pedophile problem in the Roman Catholic Church, most American churches being hit with child sexual-abuse allegations are Protestant, and most of the alleged abusers are not clergy or staff, but church volunteers.
These are findings from national surveys by Christian Ministry Resources (CMR), a tax and legal-advice publisher serving more than 75,000 congregations and 1,000 denominational agencies nationwide.

Dr. Shupe suggests the 70 allegations-per-week figure actually could be higher, because underreporting is common… Nearly 4 percent said they had been victims of sexual abuse by clergy. Child sexual abuse was part of that, but not broken out, he says.

James Cobble, executive director of CMR, who oversees the survey, says the data show that child sex-abuse happens broadly across all denominations– and that clergy aren’t the major offenders.

“The Catholics have gotten all the attention from the media, but this problem is even greater with the Protestant churches simply because of their far larger numbers,” he says.

Of the 350,000 churches in the US, 19,500 – 5 percent – are Roman Catholic. Catholic churches represent a slightly smaller minority of churches in the CMR surveys which aren’t scientifically random, but “representative” demographic samples of churches, Dr. Cobble explains.

And if you’d like compiled news sources on sexual abuse by *Protestant *clergy, then please go here.

As always, use the information wisely.


i’d bust out crying… lol

his wife will straighten him out…



“Thanks” to my catholic brothers and sisters…I knew I could get good advice from you!

I have e-mailed him a short note about how I feel and included the links you gave me…I will pray that he understands the message.


How about saying something like “Yes, just imagine how you would feel if a few of your priests behaved in such an evil manner. Well I feel even worse.”

If he goes on after that he’s either hopeless or it’s deliberate.


I would suggest using an assertive technique to respond. Like this: When you make fun of my Church/beliefs/priests, I feel hurt/angry/sad. Please stop saying things like this, especially when you know they are not true. Then if he says any more, you can use some of the statistics that show that there are no more pedophiles/abusers among the clergy than in any other group.


PS You might also point out (if you don’t think it’s giving him new ammunition) that the abuse was not pedophilia, but homosexual behavior between homosexual priests and adolescent boys, a very different thing.


[quote=kayla]My husband and I…he knows I’m a Cathloic and in love with my faith…but he torments me with these comments. I just ignore them b/c i don’t want to hurt anyones feelings espically his wife (my best friend). I have prayed about it and asked Jesus to help me say the right thing, but I’m still not certian what to do.
How should I handle this politely?

I would say (I do say in similar situations) you are talking about my family. True that sadly a small percentage of priests, like a percentage of the general population, are guilty of terrible crimes against children, however to make that generalization about all priests is an attack on my faith, an attack on all the good priests who serve us and give witness for Christ, and a personal attack on me. If you persist in this line of conversation, I will assume your motive is to end our friendship.


I have a friend like that- I told him pivately that I was exteremely offended by those remarks, and that’s stopped it.


Ask him if he knows why when a Catholic priest is just accused of abusing children, it makes the front page of the paper and all the prime time news. If a Protetant minister gets accused of the same thing, it may make the 5th or 6th page of a newspaper but rarely gets prime time news coverage.


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